As the school holidays officially kick off most parents will be wondering how they are going to keep their kids entertained for the next couple of months. That’s where yoga comes in. Not only is kids yoga a fun way to bond with your children but it can also be practiced with children as young as 18 months, when your little ones are just starting to become mobile.
To keep it fun try incorporating stories, themes related to animals and using noises or nursery rhymes to create a story. For bigger kids they may find they enjoy the gymnastics side of yoga, like playing upside down and having fun with strength.
An important part of encouraging little ones to do yoga is for them to understand the benefits of taking some quiet time at the end. Allowing them to lie down and be still, for them to understand how it makes them feel. Using affirmation cards at the end of a practice can be a great way to talk about feelings and emotions and bringing positivity to their day.
Children will be more motivated to do yoga if they see you do it too. The same with exercise, kids will want to copy. So try to roll out your mat regularly to encourage them to copy you.
Here are some fun poses to do with your children.
4 Easy And Fun Kids Yoga Poses
Horse Back Ride
This is a fun pose and also a bit of a workout for the parent/carer. The adult needs to start on all fours, or resting their seat on their heels. The child can then climb onto the adults back making sure the feet are wrapped around the adults waist or at least feet being held. The adult can then play around with standing up and jumping about or shaking around on the floor to give the feeling of a bumpy ride.
Unlike us adults, children are pretty fearless; they go upside down without any worries. It’s such shame as adults we lose this side of us, so practicing this with your children can allow you to connect to a more playful side. Using a wall place your hands about a legs distance on the floor facing the wall.
Bring your heels to touch the wall and slowly walk one leg up the wall to come to 90 degrees and push into the wall to lift your hips above your shoulders. The other leg on the floor can meet at the wall or maybe reach it up to the sky like a split leg handstand.
This pose is a great one to include the nursery rhyme ‘See Saw Margery Daw’ with. Two of you sit opposite each other and with bent knees bring your feet to touch. Reach towards one another to hold hands and as you sing rock back and forth.
Even when it seems like your child won’t stop and slow down you’ll be surprised at how much they love this bit. Encourage them to lie down like the shape of a big star and being as quiet as can be. I like to use a feather or something soft to tickle them at first to give them the giggles and then they can come to a more restful state. Guide them to take big deep breathes to feel relaxed.
Holly is the founder of Studio iO, a small dedicated Yoga Space in central Brighton where she teaches weekly classes in Hatha, Vinyasa Flow and TRX Yoga.